Isn't it important to broaden the base... and academia?
-A Consideration of the Japanese Language and Behavior Concerning Academia-
I sometimes write as an outsider, but I am often bothered by the words and actions of those in academia.
If we compare it to sports, the J-League is unnecessary, the four major leagues should be used from the beginning, and players who cannot make the four major leagues (non-professional) should be extinguished. If a player can't make the big four leagues, he should disappear.
Whether it is soccer, professional baseball, or anything else, it is important to have a broad base.
Whether it is the argument that there is no need for a national academic society or not, it is an attempt to narrow the base to a very small number of top-level leaguers, and I believe that this will only make the field thinner and thinner.
Of course, if they don't do their jobs as well as they should, then there is a problem...
(I don't know about this as an outsider, but some domestic issues are a bit of a crapshoot, but still...).
The same could be said for baseball majors, 3A, 2A, 1A, rookie leagues, etc.
In England, there are up to seven divisions in soccer.
That kind of broad base supports the sport. It is not supported only by a few players such as Ronaldo and Honda.
However, in the academic field, people say that JAL and others are worthless, or that they are professionals. If they were professionals.....
Even in the U.S. and the U.K., the university system (higher education system) is quite complicated, and they are only talking about a small number of research universities...but for some reason, they make it sound like that is all there is.
Of course, Japan has its own problems. If it is a community college or a place of continuing education, it needs an academic system of its own, and the faculty there are faculty members and not so many researchers. A for-profit university like Trump University could be similar to that.
The lack of distinction and uniformity in that area may be a problem.
Recently, there are fewer high school teachers doing research of any kind. In the past, local high school teachers used to be the main players in regional studies, but I hear that they have almost become an endangered species these days.
Some minor researchers in their own fields are doing their best. However, the number of such researchers seems to be decreasing due to the hollowing out of the domestic research field.
It may be true to say that these researchers are not published in international journals, but they were important, and Japan must have people who do academic work in their own way, even if it is just research.
It is no different from the importance of grass baseball or amateur sports.
(Moreover, such a person can become a professional: in the case of academia, it is desirable to have a person who can guide the work to be published in international journals. (In academia, it would be desirable to have someone who can guide them to publish in international journals.)
Some say that universities have become culture schools for the uppermiddlemiddlemiddlemiddle class or for the aged, which is a problem, but I think that is an important role.
It is also important to provide a kind of culture for the upper class and the aged, and without such a thing, the basic culture in Japan will decline. It would be a shame if the alternative is conspiracy-theory YouTube videos, books written by self-proclaimed experts of some kind, and hate books.
It is also important to teach academic subjects in an easy-to-understand manner to the upper class and middle class who are interested in a variety of subjects, and we should not place too much value on scholars who aim to be published in top journals.
In other words, lecturers who teach at cultural schools are also important.
→It is also important to create opportunities for the recipients to present their research. In a sense, education and research are one and the same. It would be good if you were doing research on Goethe's poems as a hobby while working as a businessman. Wouldn't it be good to give a presentation, write a paper, or compose a poem once in a while?
The argument these days is "no," that it is important to be a professional and publish papers in prestigious international journals, and that there is no need to engage in such a trivial hobby. Huh? Taxpayers can't be invested in such things, and it's useless if it's privately funded, so don't do it. University faculty members who are involved in such things are in big trouble. It seems that more and more people are arguing, "If you have that kind of time, do research in your laboratory and write papers to be published in international journals.
I think it is important to consider expanding the base of people who deal with such things...
However, I am sure that they are not researchers. It is also true that they are not researchers.
It would be better to divide them into such categories as teachers of higher education and people who know various things and can give interesting talks (i.e., scholars, or even Buddhist priests), and give them their own existence value.
Of course, it would be wonderful if the person in question had outstanding international achievements, and that would be preferable.
However, there is also aptitude, and everyone can't be a top leaguer.
Some are major leaguers, and some are in 2A or independent leagues. Some players are so thrilled to have played in a major league game that they will talk about it for the rest of their lives.
That's all right, isn't it?
Scholars (?) We also need faculty members who are willing to teach at small local private universities in the region, and we also need faculty members in the practica field and faculty members who can help students who can't manage to get by at F-rank universities to develop the ability to eat in society and even to get them to become a little interested in academia and read for life, etc. That's good. We also need to do that.
Not everyone can be No. 1 in the rankings.
We also need people who are not players.
The ranking is meaningful because there are people at the bottom of the ranking.
Tennis, with its fierce competition for ranking, seems to be the closest to academia, but professionals are professionals even if they are quite low-ranked, and players who can participate in the four major tournaments are not the only ones who have value. There are also former pros who are doing well as coaches even if they can't make it that far.
To return to baseball, it is also common in the U.S. to have managers, coaches, and staff members who have never played before, and they all have their own roles.
Even at the grassroots level, there is value in that, and these people need to be able to enjoy baseball in their own way. For this reason, we need people to maintain the stadiums, former players who can coach, and so on.
In the same way, academic fields would also be important, as well as the maintenance of the field and coaches. It would be good if the coach had international achievements, but not everyone can be a top-ranked coach.
(As one might expect, zero is not a good coach...) However, it is important to have a coach who is a great player and not a great coach. However, as in the case of a great player who is not a great coach, someone who is too accomplished may not be a good match for the upper class or for ordinary citizens. (The reverse may also be true: it is not impossible that a person who has no achievements may be good only at teaching, or that a person in the F-rank class may be more approachable to students.)
In the first place, at the level of practical education, what is important is practical education (which is why there are so many practitioners), and it is probably the place where the cultivation of practical skills is required. In some cases, practical work is more important than writing papers.
I have rambled on for a long time, but I think it is important to broaden the base and diversity of the academic field, and I think that a single-minded focus on the achievements of articles in international journals is a bit problematic (of course, there should be people who are completely competitive in this field, and I have no objection to investing a large part of their resources in this area. (Of course, there should be people who are fully committed to it, and I have no objection to investing much of one's resources in it.)
It is also important to engage in academic activities in the community with local people, even if they are small.
However, the most important thing for those in the middle is to write papers and publish them in international journals, journals with high impact factors. It is certainly better to separate the institutional theory from the knowledge. Otherwise, we will end up with mass production of faculty members who don't even write papers. If not, we will end up with mass production of faculty members who don't even write papers.
To some extent, it is necessary to have a system that clearly identifies who a person is, and conducts evaluations accordingly.
If they are writing papers, then they have no choice but to do their best in writing papers.
On the other hand, some are thoroughly engaged in practical work (e.g., management, MBA), which is said to exist at Harvard University and other top universities. Such people are likely to focus on practical evaluation and educational evaluation.
There are also various other types, such as university administrators, organizers, policy advisors, etc. The worst thing is to hide behind diversity.
The worst kind of person is the one who hides behind diversity and does not actually do anything. It seems that condemnation of such people is unavoidable.
To deal with this, I think it is necessary to make the evaluation criteria more visible and to classify them into categories. (Some teachers have0 classes and 5 classes every day, so it would be better to make it clear how much education they are providing (some teachers are in the state of cram school teachers, and some have only 8 classes and say that their education is not good enough). ～(Some teachers have close to 20 classes, 5 classes daily, and are in the state of cram school teachers. The same difference should also be taken into consideration whether or not they have administrative duties or other various duties, and it would be fine if some of them focus mainly on those duties. (In fact, it seems that there are people who do.)
Even if we consider Ant's Law, there will inevitably be bad teachers, and the more we increase the number of teachers, the greater the percentage of bad teachers will be. This is the same with elementary, junior high, and high school teachers.
There are many unqualified teachers in this area as well.
To some extent, it may be possible to do without increasing the number of teachers by utilizing AI.
There may be a way to use recorded classes, with Q&A sessions only, and with several tutors, since it is difficult for a single person to teach a class.
Recordings could also be made at different levels.
Of course, we may hear criticism that this is not the way to do it, and this is just one example, as it may vary from field to field.
In any case, amateurs must have an environment where they can do something like that as a hobby. Without such an environment, Japan will eventually lose most of its academic culture.
The polarization and lack of a middle class will affect the national strength of Japan itself, and a thick middle class is important to support democracy.
(However, it is also necessary to consider whether democracy is absolute. (However, it is also necessary to consider whether democracy is absolute or not, and this is something that all educated citizens should think about. It is not something that only a few scholars with international achievements should think about.)
Japan's strength lies in the fact that its middle class is also relatively well educated.